Enjoy it While it’s Fresh: Grand Mariner

Grand Mariner are three dudes from New Jersey that don’t really like the beach that much despite sounding like they were raised on a healthy diet of King of the Beach and Afraid of Heights.  Happy to Birth is a scuzzy EP full of scuzzy surf-punk anthems, but you probably could’ve figured that out from reading the tracklist which includes titles like “Summer Wars”, “Unforgiving Sun” and “Dolphin Blood (beachparty)”.  The tracklist serves as a pretty fair warning, if you’re not down for some fun in the sun this EP isn’t for you.  What really separates the band however, is when they diverge a bit from surf-rock proper.  “Bathroom Show” is 40 seconds of lo-fi bliss in the campfire sing-along spirit of Animal Collective’s “College”.  Even “Haunted Surfboard” only uses traces of surf-punk to construct a claustrophobic trip that pushes their vocalists beyond what is presented on the rest of the album.  Of course, I don’t want to get down to hard on their unashamed surf songs either.  “Max Milwaukee”, “Dolphin Blood” and “Summer Wars” are three of the catchiest guitar-lead tracks I’ve heard in a long time.  It’s basically summer anyway.

-PK

pkelly94Enjoy it While it’s Fresh: Grand Mariner
  • Alex Pike

    These guys make music straight from the heart and gut, genuine fellows with a knack for making life enjoyable. Nowhere to go but up for Grand Mariner in the future.